This is an introductory post that starts the new VCP-DCV 2021 Study Guide based on vSphere 7. The main page of the guide is here – VCP7-DCV Study Guide – VCP-DCV 2021 Certification, and you'll find there ALL the chapters. This year, some chapters are posted on other IT blogs where I'm an author. However most of the work will be done here and, in the end, the document will be released as a PDF.
As you know, this blog runs most of the time as a single-person blog. As such, there are periods of time where after 12 years of writing, I needed some break from writing. Also we have a COVID situation which from the moral perspective does not help either. My IT peers and friends know where I live so I can't really complain from the weather perspective right now as it's very hot and sunny every day (even too much).
Let's go. The VMware Exam prep guide is here on VMware’s website. The official code for this exam is 2VO-21.20, and the cost of the exam is $250.00. There is a total of 70 questions with a duration of 130 minutes. The passing score is 300, max is 500.
VMware ESXi Server
Only supported hardware should be used to install VMware ESXi. If you don't, you most likely won't find some components such as NICs, storage controllers, etc, after installation. Pretty annoying if you ask me, but that's the way it is. VMware cannot support ALL the server (or PC) hardware that exists. The VMware hardware compatibility guide (HCL) page is here.
- ESXi 7 requires a host machine with at least two CPU cores.
- ESXi 7 supports 64-bit x86 processors released after September 2006. This includes a broad range of multi-core processors. For a complete list of supported processors, see the VMware compatibility guide at http://www.vmware.com/resources/compatibility.
- ESXi 7 requires the NX/XD bit to be enabled for the CPU in the BIOS.
- ESXi 7 requires a minimum of 4 GB of physical RAM. It is recommended to provide at least 8 GB of RAM to run virtual machines in typical production environments.
- To support 64-bit virtual machines, support for hardware virtualization (Intel VT-x or AMD RVI) must be enabled on x64 CPUs.
- One or more Gigabit or faster Ethernet controllers. For a list of supported network adapter models, see the VMware Compatibility Guide
- SCSI disk or a local, non-network, RAID LUN with unpartitioned space for the virtual machines.
- For Serial ATA (SATA), a disk connected through supported SAS controllers or supported on-board SATA controllers. SATA disks are considered remote, not local. These disks are not used as a scratch partition by default because they are seen as remote.
VMware ESXi 7.0 has a completely new partition layout. As such, you can't revert back (via [Shift-R] to initiate the recovery mode and eventually recover the previous ESXi version. The ESXi 7.0 has only 4 different partitions compared to the previous release which has had 8.
You can still revert back from ESXi 7.0b to 7.0GA.
VMware limits the number of cores per license to 32 (unlimited before) so if you buy a 1CPU license you will only be able to have CPU with 32 cores, otherwise, you'll need 2 licenses. If the CPU has more than 32 cores, additional (per-CPU) licenses are required. For example, for 48 core CPU, you'll need 2 licenses.
This affects not only paid VMware vSphere/ESXi as ESXi Free version
ESXi 7.0 rises these requirements to more than 3GB of disk space (Exactly 3.72 GB to be correct). The recommended size is actually 32 Gb. What's interesting is the fact that while the size of the boot partition (100MB) does not change, the other partitions sizes change depending on which size of media is used for the installation.
Apart from HDD, SSD, and NVMe, you can also use boot from a SAN LUN.
Minimal ESXi 7 Storage requirements for installation:
- 8GB for USB sticks or SD devices (4Gb if you're upgrading from ESXi 6.7).
- 32GB for other boot devices like hard disks, or flash media like SSD or NVMe devices.
- A boot device must not be shared between ESXi hosts.
The partition layout has changed as well. There is an increase in the boot bank sizes where the system partitions are consolidated and are expandable. See this image from VMware.
The managing piece. When your environment is bigger than 2-3 hosts, you'll want to have vCenter.
VMware vCSA is a Linux distribution based on Photon OS. For some of you who do not follow VMware at all and know only ESXi then we could say that yes, VCSA is a management VM for ESXi hosts.
In order to understand vSphere management, a while back, we have put a simple article that explains What is The Difference between VMware vSphere, ESXi and vCenter. The posts explain the basics of VMware vSphere, which is basically a commercial name for the whole VMware Suite. Again, real basic, real simple explanation to people who do not deal with VMware.
The vCSA VM runs PhotonOS 3.0 which is a Linux distro maintained by VMware. The machine runs several services such as vSphere authentication services, PostgreSQL database, vSphere Lifecycle Manager (previously vSphere U date Manager) etc.%220
There are a lot of services for authentication, such as vSphere Single Sign-on (SSO), vSphere license services, Certification authority.
Other services such as vSphere Auto-deploy or ESXi dump collector.
Only HTML5 web-based client is now used. No more Flash.
The deployment of vCSA can be done via GUI or via CLI. There are examples of .json files available within the installation directory.
Overview of the web-based access for vCenter Server Appliance for VMware vSphere. The updates of the VCSA are now quite easy too.
VMware Platform services controller (PSC) is now integrated into the same VM. The architectures with external PSCs are phased out and vCenter 7 allows you to do easy migration via assistant.
Find other chapters on the main page of the guide – VCP7-DCV Study Guide – VCP-DCV 2021 Certification,
Thanks for reading.
More posts from ESX Virtualization:
- vSphere 7.0 Download Now Available
- vSphere 7.0 Page [All details about vSphere and related products here]
- VMware vSphere 7.0 Announced – vCenter Server Details
- VMware vSphere 7.0 DRS Improvements – What's New
- How to Patch vCenter Server Appliance (VCSA) – [Guide]
- What is The Difference between VMware vSphere, ESXi and vCenter
- How to Configure VMware High Availability (HA) Cluster